Mobile gaming and crowdfunding (Kickstarter and Indiegogo anyone?) have provided a fertile ground for indie games to sprout and for their developers to bring forth new and interesting mechanics, storylines, worlds, and characters, or innovative re-imaginings of popular old ones.
Plunge by Spookybuns is an up-and-coming game which looks to combine already familiar puzzle mechanics with incredible new dark and comic-like art style. Featuring an isometric view of each dungeon level, Plunge is a marvel to look at, at least from what we have seen so far from the released trailers, art, and gifs from the site. Speaking of the site, I’d like to compliment the developers on a crisp and clean site where all the pertinent information is clearly marked, briskly stated and clear of clutter.
The game itself will feature the already many-times-before seen mechanic of swiping in the direction you want your character to move, for them to slide towards the edge of the playing field, stopping only when they’ve hit a wall. Games like these usually feature a lonely protagonist, sometimes even not humanoid but rather a cube or perhaps a ball, sliding on a level and trying to reach the destination tile in as little moves as possible. Others feature enemies which perhaps move faster than you, and who kill you if they are able to reach you. Plunge, however, will feature prison guards that try to stop you from making your daring (wait for it) plunge through the open tile and onto the next level of the dungeon, until you break free. The guards aren’t all-powerful, though, and you can outmaneuver them and kill them with your attacks as well, so this should add an interesting dimension to the gameplay.
There’s plenty of characters to choose from, featuring different stats and strategies required to beat the levels. There will also be upwards of 30 perks which you can select to further customize your playstyle, like Oddity, a perk which allows you to deal one extra point of damage on odd floors only or Sprung which knocks back enemies after hit. Every few levels you’ll meet powerful bosses which will require extra tactics and strategizing to defeated. One of these is the wacky Turbo Vomit Rainbow Lichlord who, you guessed it, vomits rainbows onto the level. This is yet another (of many) indications that Plunge will feature tongue-in-cheek humor and plenty of zany characters.
The developers call the game a rogue-lite dungeon crawler but I think you could also call it an isometric puzzle adventure with an atmosphere of dark humor and not be amiss. It should be coming out soon as the developer’s site claims it’s coming out “Mid 2018”, which is where we presently are, although a trailer video cites the much funnier “When it’s done” release date. I guess we’ll have to wait for the latter until we can enjoy plunging.